Photo courtesy: Stadium Super Truck series

Matt Brabham looks to add to family legacy at Long Beach in Stadium Super Trucks

Leave a comment

After four rounds of competition in the Speed Energy Stadium Super Truck series, Matt Brabham brings a 34-point advantage to this weekend’s Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, on a track with a lot of personal history.

Matt added his name to the family history book last year by winning the opening round of the series. He has an opportunity to become only the third driver to record multiple wins there – and that is quite an accomplishment considering how long the venue has been on the calendar. It was part of the inaugural season in 2013 and has hosted a race every year since.

This weekend, Brabham has two rounds of competition to grab another win on April 14-15.

But the 24-year-old driver is not the first Brabham to win at Long Beach. Last year, Matt took his place alongside his father, Geoff, who won in the Toyota Atlantic series in 1981 and 1982. He went on to finish second, sixth and third after graduating to the IndyCar series.

“Dad had some decent results at Long Beach during his open-wheel career in North America and I have always felt at home on the legendary street course,” Brabham said in a press release.

Brabham built his Super Truck lead by standing on the podium in all three races at Adelaide, Australia on March 2-4. He finished third in the first two rounds and won the final round.

“Winning the round in Adelaide was great, especially the final race where we had really good pace,” Brabham said. “That gives us confidence heading into Long Beach.

“I am looking forward to carrying the momentum into this round and putting on a good show for the fans.”

While Brabham has a notable lead of 34 points, second through fifth is separated by just nine points.

Gavin Harlein’s second-place in the standings is remarkable given his last outing. As Brabham took the checkers in round three at Adelaide, Harlein lost a wheel in a hard landing off the last jump. He spun across the finish line sixth.

Arie Luyendyk Jr. is third in the standings with series creator Robby Gordon and Cole Potts tied for fourth.

Supercross points leader Eli Tomac finds silver linings in interruption

Leave a comment

Though his Monster Energy AMA Supercross championship charge was put on hold, the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic had a silver lining for Eli Tomac.

Off the road while the season was postponed for nearly three months, the points leader was able to be present as his girlfriend, Jessica, gave birth to their daughter, Lev, on April 26

“A huge blessing for us there,” Tomac told host Mike Tirico during a “Lunch Talk Live” interview (click on the video above) in which he also joked about becoming a pro at busting off diaper changes. “That was one good blessing for us as we had our daughter on a Sunday, that would have been on a travel day coming back from the race in Las Vegas.

NBCSN

“That was probably the only positive out of all this mess was being able to be there for the birth.”

But there also could be more good fortune for Tomac as the series resumes Sunday at Salt Lake City, Utah (3-4 p.m. ET on NBCSN, 4-6 p.m. on NBC).

The final seven events will be held over 22 days in Rice-Eccles Stadium, which sits at just over 4,000 feet.

The elevation could favor Tomac, who was born and lives in Colorado and is accustomed to riding and training at altitude, which is a departure for many Supercross riders (many of whom hail from California and Florida).

COVID-19 TESTING REQUIRED: Supercross outlines protocols for last seven races

“That’s going to be the test for us,” said the Kawasaki rider, who five of the first 10 races this season. “We’re at elevation in Salt Lake, so when you’re on a motorcycle, you have a little bit of a loss of power. That’s just what happens when you come up in elevation. And a lot of guys train at sea level, and we’re at 4,000 to 5,000 feet, so cardio-wise, we’ll be pushed to the limit.

“Most of our races are Saturday nights and back to back weeks, but this go around it’s Sunday and Wednesday, so recovery is going to be key.”

Supercross will race Sunday and Wednesday for the next three weeks, capping the season with the June 21 finale, which also will be shown on NBCSN from 3-4:30 p.m. ET and NBC from 4:30-6 p.m. ET.

Tomac, who holds a three-point lead over Ken Roczen (who also recently visited “Lunch Talk Live”), told Tirico he had been riding for 90 minutes Thursday morning on a track outside Salt Lake City.

“Most of us we can rely on our past riding pretty well,” Tomac said. “The question is if you can go the distance. That’s what a lot of guys have to train on is going the distance. We go 20 minutes plus a lap. That’s what you’ve got to keep sharp is your general muscles. Within two to three days, your brain starts warming up more if you take a few weeks off the motorcycle.”

Here is the schedule and TV information for the rest of the season:

  • Sunday, May 31 (3-4 p.m. ET, NBCSN; 4-6 p.m. ET, NBC);
  • Wednesday, June 3 ( 10:00 pm – 1:00 am ET, NBCSN);
  • Sunday, June 7 (5-8:00 p.m. ET, NBCSN);
  • Wednesday, June 10 (7–10 p.m. ET, NBCSN);
  • Sunday, June 14 (7-10 p.m. ET, NBCSN);
  • Wednesday, June 17 (7-10 p.m. ET, NBCSN);
  • Sunday, June 21 (3-4:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN; 4:30 – 6:00 p.m. ET, NBC).
Eli Tomac rides his No. 3 Kawasaki in the Feb. 29 race at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia (Charles Mitchell/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images).